Abiding Times by Tunku Zain Al-'Abidin Muhriz

By Tunku Zain Al-'Abidin Muhriz

This ebook includes articles chosen normally from the author's column, Abiding occasions, in theSun, Malaysia, in addition to people with Tengku Zatashah Idris, Syed Haizam Jamalullail, Sharyn Shufiyan and Quek Sue Yian. released among March 2008 and August 2010, they have been written within the interval after Tunku Zain's go back from the united states and as much as the Proclamation of the eleventh Yang di-Pertuan Besar. From calling for the assessments and balances so the most important to the potent functioning of a democratic society to be reinforced, to reminding all contributors in a democratic society in their rights and tasks, the author writes in language that's effortless to learn and with a wry feel of humour.

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But a reintroduction of local elections would empower Malaysians in many ways. First, there is the moral argument of enabling people to have greater control over their own affairs. Decision-making bodies that are closer to the people they govern enable one area to implement different solutions to problems to another area. This can go right down to how rubbish and recycling are collected or what bulbs streetlights use, thus encouraging competition in policy ideas as well as between providers of services.

Although ‘left’ and ‘right’ were hardly used to describe our parties during the election, there have been attempts to place them on this continuum. The ‘left’ has come to encompass the DAP (a member of the worldwide fraternity Socialist International) and the dominant, social democratic faction of PKR—although it is important to note the existence of leftist strands within PAS. But the latter’s oft-stereotyped fundamentalist wing is placed on the ‘right’, alongside the UMNO with its ethno-nationalist origins.

Whatever the intentions of Malaysians on polling day, they have undoubtedly strengthened the primary institution discharged with the duty of protecting their liberty: Parliament. Our Federal Constitution has been amended nearly 700 times by some accounts: a small sample includes amendments to automate Royal Assent to bills, expel Singapore and most recently, raise the retirement age of the Elections Commission Chairman. The government party have 63 percent of the seats in the Dewan Rakyat from the barely over 50 percent they obtained in the national vote, for which they have First Past The Post to thank (I hasten to add however that I am no supporter of proportional representation for the lower house).

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